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Senate approves to move ahead with reforming Zofemat land zone

Cancun, Q.R. — By majority vote, the Senate of the Republic approved to propose to reform Articles 7 and 19 of the General Law of National Assets (LGBN) in order to reduce the Federal Maritime Land Zone from 20 to 10 meters.

The reduction of the land zone would then expand the surface of the maritime beach and make it freely and unreservedly passable.

Amid praise and applause for the 4T and despite warnings by scientists, academics and specialists, the proposal was approved by 111 of the 115 legislators. The results of the vote have since been sent to the Chamber of Deputies.

José Luis Pech, Quintana Roo Senator, stated that this reform to the Ley General de Bienes Nacionales (LGBN) is “an act of justice and seeks to say goodbye to private beaches”, guaranteeing their enjoyment for all.

“With this modification, the aim is to make it very clear in the General Law of National Assets that maritime beaches include the first 10 meters of sand from the highest tide and that they will be for public use, with free and open access to the sea in any direction.”

“Consequently, Zofemat (Zona Federal Marítimo Terrestre), which currently comprises 20 meters above high tide, is divided into two parts: The first 10 meters are for the enjoyment of Mexican men and women and the other 10 may be concessioned,” explained Pech who also pointed out that the reform covers lagoons, lakes and estuaries or natural deposits of sea water.

With the reduction of the federal zone, the resources that the municipalities collect for the use, enjoyment and exploitation of that strip, now of up to 20 meters of those who have a concession, will decrease by half once the validity of the current concession ends.

Senator Pech clarified that since the law cannot be retroactive, the current Zofemat concessions will continue to cover their 20 meters until their validity ends, so “at this time” there will be no impact on federal or municipal income.

Pech Várguez says that currently, it is not clear what is understood by “public beach” since its physical dimensions are not defined and its legal concept is complex, contrary to what happens with the delimitation of Zofemat, which favors the authorization of private concessions on the best beaches in the country.

It is those concessions, he says, that prevent residents from enjoying the beaches.

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